It provides instant access to thousands of files and folders, contacts and bookmarks, applications and preference panes just by entering short abbreviations of the searched item's name.

All you have to do is hit Command-Space to bring LaunchBar's input window to front, enter an arbitrary abbreviation, and as soon as you start typing LaunchBar displays the best matching choices, ready to be opened immediately.


Powerful search, sub-search and browsing capabilities

  • Ultra fast, adaptive abbreviation search technology (AASv4), delivers amazingly accurate results, even without any training
  • Search in Spotlight
  • Look Up in Dictionary
  • Recent documents of selected application (e.g. type TED to select "TextEdit", then press right arrow to show all recently opened documents)
  • Browse your Address Book contacts, contact groups and contact details such as email addresses, phone numbers, etc.
  • Bookmark & History Browsing (e.g. type SH to select "Safari History", then hit the right arrow key twice to see the most recently visited web pages)
  • iTunes Library Browsing (by genre, artist, album or composer). e.g. type IT to select "iTunes", then right arrow to show the currently playing song, then right arrow again to find similar tracks
  • File System Browsing (traverses folder aliases, the top level entry shows all mounted volumes)
  • Sub-search while browsing with arrow keys, press the space bar to perform a deep sub-search
  • Context Search: Select a search context by abbreviation (e.g. EA for "Email Addresses"), then sub-search within the selected context by pressing Space followed by a further abbreviation

Text Input

  • An optional text field allows entering search strings or parameters
  • Direct Input of URLs (either via Command-L or automatically by entering a dot character)
  • Web Search (free editable search templates, e.g. select Google, press Space)
  • iTunes Music Store Search (select iTunes, press Space)
  • Pass parameters to AppleScripts and Unix Executables (e.g. select "ping", press Space).
  • File Content Search (select plain text, rich text or html file, then press Space)
  • Rename files, create new folders (Command-Shift-R, Command-Shift-N)

Opening items

  • Open with... / Move to... (press the Tab key, select the destination)
  • Built-in Finder Commands: New Folder, Rename, Duplicate, Get Info, Move to Trash, Eject
  • Run AppleScripts and Unix Executables, pass string or file parameters
  • Run Automator Workflows
  • Terminal Support: "Open Terminal Here", "Run Terminal Command Here", "Run Terminal Command With"

Powerful configuration and indexing options

  • Configuration interface, featuring unlimited undo/redo support
  • Powerful, multithreaded indexing engine, performs index scans in background
  • Lots of index scanners: Applications, iTunes Music Library, iPhoto Library, Network Locations, Preference Panes, Sherlock Channels, Watson Tools, Frameworks, Dock, Address Books, Bookmarks, Web Browser History, ...
  • Lots of configuration options to keep the index at a reasonable size (see the Options pane in the configuration window)
  • Live index updates (e.g. when you add a bookmark in Safari or when you import songs to your iTunes Library, these items are immediately accessible via LaunchBar)
  • Disabling of individual index items (Note: Multiple items can be enabled/disabled at once via context menu or space bar)
  • Smart Groups: "Items Grouped by Kind", makes all items of the same type accessible via sub-search (e.g. "Applications", "RTF Documents", "Bookmarks", "Email Addresses", ...)

Other features

  • Speech Synthesis: Spoken feedback of any searching or browsing activities
  • Switching Network Locations
  • Playing iTunes playlists
  • Text Clips (files with a ".clip.txt" or ".clip.rtf" extension). The file contents are inserted in the frontmost application
  • "Show in Frontmost Finder Window" (Command-Shift-Return) in addition to "Show in Finder" (Command-Return)
  • "Send to LaunchBar" System Service (Command-Shift-F), e.g. select a file in Finder, or select some text in TextEdit or Safari, then press Command-Shift-F

What's New

  • Fixed a bug causing the theme settings to get reset to Default & Automatic at each restart of the app.

Automatic Theme Switching

  • Added automatic switching between a theme's dark and light appearance based on the current system appearance.
  • The desired theme appearance can be chosen in LaunchBar Settings > Appearance.
  • In addition to automatic switching it's still possible to choose a fixed dark or light appearance.
  • The desired appearance can also be chosen in the LaunchBar window. Select a theme (either by browsing the Themes indexing rule or by selecting it directly via abbreviation search), then press Right Arrow (or Space) and choose either Automatic, Light or Dark.
  • Added dark variants of built-in themes (except for the "Vintage" theme).

Improvements and Bug Fixes

  • Improved appearance of sidebar in index window.
  • Improved caching of applications index for better startup performance.
  • Improved ranking of system applications when searching via abbreviation search.
  • Fixed: Sending files to a shortcut (those created in the macOS Shortcuts app) didn't work on macOS Ventura. This was caused by a bug in the Shortcuts API on Ventura, which no longer accepts multiple files or folders to be sent to a shortcut. As a consequence it's currently only possible to send a single file or folder to a shortcut via LaunchBar on Ventura. On macOS Monterey it's still possible to send multiple files or folders.
  • Fixed a bug causing a file path copied from LaunchBar into a Terminal window to be pasted twice.
  • Fixed a crash when allowing Calendar/Reminders access after adding or enabling the corresponding indexing rule.
  • Fixed an issue causing the shadows in a few custom icons to be headed in the wrong direction.